Embr | Nintendo Switch Review
Updated: Nov 19
Developed by Muse Games and published by Curve Digital, Embr is a fast and energetic 1st person firefighting game, available on Windows PC, PlayStation, XBox, and Nintendo Switch. For this review, I was playing the Nintendo Switch version of Embr, in handheld mode.
In Embr, you are basically like an Uber driver in which, instead of hiring you as a taxi driver, members of the public hire you to undertake rescue missions, salvage contracts and also escape missions where you must find your way out of a burning building to safety. The idea here is not to put the fires out, but to achieve all of your objectives before the fire has totally consumed the building.
You start the game with basic equipment such as an axe to break down doors, a water hose to tame the fires, an in-game mobile phone app which is used to locate the trapped civilians inside each building and a ladder which can be used to access higher levels of the buildings. The money you make from completing each job can be spent on upgrading your gear and also cosmetic upgrades for your character. You can earn yourself extra money during each contract by saving furniture and stacks of cash, however, you must prioritise which you want to rescue first because you will lose money and popularity if you let people burn inside the buildings.
Making your way through the buildings is like a puzzle in itself as you have to find your way around obstacles, turn off light switches or fuse boxes to isolate electricity before you can pass through certain rooms and move objects around to clear your path. You also need to keep a close eye on your water level because if you let this run out then there is little chance of you making it through the contract alive. You can replenish your water level at any sink inside each building.
The visuals in Embr are very blocky and colourful but they did remind me of something that had come out of a low budget VR game. There is a diverse selection of environments including houses, hotels, factory floors and museums so this provides enough variety to stop things from becoming repetitive.
I found the movement of the character to be very janky - I’m not sure if this is done on purpose to try and instill more carnage and make it seem more fun but quite frankly, I found it very annoying trying to make my way through each of the buildings.
I can see how this may be fun when playing with friends but in all honesty, all of my attempts to make any kind of connection or get any kind of enjoyment out of this game went up in flames very early on. This is a shame because I think this is a great concept and a lot of fun could be had playing with friends in a game like this, but just not this game. I tried so hard to like Embr but every time I started it up to try and give it another chance, after 5 minutes I would realise why I turned it off in the first place.
PaultheBrave09’s Rating: 1 smouldering pile of ash out of 5.
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